Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
This week’s Psalm is Psalm 16. Here we can easily find a case of mistaken identity. It’s so natural for us to think the Psalms are about us. And they are, in a way.
In verse 1, I really do want God to be my refuge. I confess in verse 2 that God is my Lord. But my devotion wavers. Maybe the second part of the verse is a little bit of wishful thinking. In verse 3 and 4 I’m going to have to confess that I will not always delight in people who are holy. And I’m more than a little bit likely, at least momentarily, to capitulate to those false gods or at least to their followers.
As we move on down the remainder of the Psalm, it becomes more and more clear that it’s expressing a steadfast relationship that I don’t naturally have with God. By verse 8 I recognize that I am too easily shaken. In verse 9 I confess that I do doubt God’s preservation of my body. And in verse 10 I realize that i have no hope whatsoever that I will not see decay.
What’s the conclusion? Psalm 16 is not about me and Jesus. It’s about Jesus, God the Son, and his relationship with God the Father. As we walk back through the text again we’ll recognize that the Son knows the Father as the refuge, the only good one. He delights, genuinely, in the holy ones. He never capitulates to the false gods. He knows that his future and his inheritance is in heavenly bliss with the Father, a place he has always occupied in the past. He is unshakable, he has no spiritual or physical fear. He is not even left to see decay, for by the third day he has risen from the dead with a perfect, glorified body.
The great news here is that in Jesus we also can find the eternal joy and pleasure described. He has adopted all who trust in him as His heirs. He is the one who gives us all the forgiveness and reconciliation we need. He is the one who guards his people in the power of the resurrection. All praise belongs to the risen Lord.
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